Bhaktavijaya: Stories of Indian Saints

by Justin E. Abbott | 1933

This is the English translation of Bhaktavijaya which is a Marathi poem written by Mahipati in 40,000 lines. The text documents the legends of Indian saints from various backgrounds and extensively covers figures like Ekanath, Tukaram, and Ramadasa, highlighting their contributions to scholarship, philosophy, poetry, and social reform. The Bhaktavi...

15.11: Krishna in his universal form

118. The noble twice-born (Brahmans) looked about and saw birds, insects, animals, men, rocks and trees, and all seemed to them in the form of Vitthal [Vitthala].

119. As the Brahmans looked on water, light, the heavens, the earth, the air, in all these five elements they saw the form of Vitthal [Vitthala].

120. The many kinds of animal life, the sun, the moon, all the stars, the many and wonderful deities, all appeared in the form of Vittha1

121. The hall of assembly, the slab before the god, the doorkeepers, Jaya and Vijaya, the pillar with the Eagle, and the great door of the temple, all these appeared in the form of Vitthal [Vitthala].

122. The Eagle-banners, the dome of the temple, the cymbals, the drums, the shouting aloud of God’s name, the steps, and the pilgrims’ outhouses, appeared in the form of Vitthal [Vitthala] to the noble Brahmans.

123. As they brought to their minds 'the three gunas: raja, tama, satva [life, intelligence and mind ], they all appeared in the form of Vitthal [Vitthala].

124. It was as if a single seed of the banyan tree was sown, and then taking root it spread out into an infinite number of forms, just as the light of the sun alone spreads over the whole of the earth;

125. and just as there is water in every juice; and just as there is but one air that pervades the universe; or as in all living bodies the digestive fire fills them.

126. There are infinite numbers of eyes, but sight is one; one tune, but many notes; the mind pervades the ten organs of sense as it appears to one’s sight;

127. likewise the one Being, the Husband of Rukmini, appeared in many forms. And as the noble twice-born (Brahmans) looked at Him, they were overwhelmed with astonishment.

128. The Life of the world took the form of the universe. Who else can be found out to give an illustration of this except Krishna, the Lover of the heart who was encircled by the Gopis?

129. When they came (to complain) to Yashoda, they saw Krishna in an infinite number of forms. Just so the Brahmans saw Him in the form of the universe.

130. The Lord Keshav (Krishna) alone pervaded the universe and no other was to be seen They naturally lost the consciousness of body, and any shame of being so left them.

131. The knowledge of supreme joy manifested itself. Every one felt the joy. The whole idea of duality was put aside, and every one had his heart filled with gladness.

132. Looking from outside, He pervaded the three worlds. But looking into the heart, the form of Shri Krishna had hidden itself there.

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